Google and Fame
The famous and infamous have always captivated the public. Whether it’s for their talent or their beautiful faces, or the scandals that befall them, celebrities demand our attention. To get a sense of who’s been peaking our interest as of late, we studied the Google search volumes of Celebrities, Athletes, Musicians and Politicians. For each category, we’ve identified the top 10 most Googled people, and the most unusually popular people by state.
The celebrity category is a mix of actors, reality TV personalities and models, four out of ten of which actually belong to the same family. Interestingly, a decade after the love triangle that rocked the tabloids, the public remains interested in Brad, Angelina, and Jennifer. The outliers, however, are more regional: Paula Deen pops up in a handful of searches that surround her home state of Georgia. Kristin Cavalari, a once-reality star from Southern California, is a top Googled person of interest to Illinoisans, thanks to her Chicago Bears’ quarterback husband. Jessica Szohr, a teen drama actress, is frequently searched in Wisconsin, most likely thanks to calling Milwaukee her hometown.
Most of the top Googled athletes can point to their long winning careers, while other names on the list can be attributed to attention-grabbing stints in the spotlight, such as Conor McGregor, and Ronda Rousey. Then there’s OJ Simpson, number six of the top most Googled athlete list, whose rank is most likely due to scandal.
Each musician on the most searched list is a mega-star, often in the headlines whether they have a record out or not. Many of the top 10 musicians—Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez; Taylor Swift and Kanye West; Beyoncé and everyone—are often paired in related news items, keeping the public intrigued. People also like a hometown hero, and it’s reflected in the searches for favorite musicians across the country. The original Jersey Boy Frankie Valli is a hit in the Garden State, Ricky Martin is popular in Florida, where he first broke out, and Prince reigns in Minnesota. The most surprising name to appear not once but four times is Art Garfunkel. From the Northeastern coast to Washington State, Mr. Garfunkel proves that music can be timeless.
Considering the nonstop media coverage of the election and its aftermath, it’s not surprising to see who is the top 10 most Googled politicians. As for outlier politicians, most of the country is still interested in finding out more about key political names: Sarah Palin, Condoleezza Rice, Mike Huckabee, Ted Kennedy, and surprisingly, his brother John F. Kennedy, who has been deceased for 40+ years.